We’re all for our staff riding our bikes so they can accurately describe its attributes and what it does and doesn’t do. It seems as though our daily-bike-commuter General Manager Stu has taken it unto himself to use the famed Mt Pleasant Ride to do just that. To be fair, this loop does show what a bike is like at speed, how it climbs, and how it could be utilised for touring. As well has his own regular commuter, he’s tried a Brompton and this week, it’s the Surly Big Dummy.
A little history. This category – generally referred to as ‘long-tail cargo bikes’ really gained popularity from XtraCycle, who developed the concept for use in Africa and then built the ‘Free Radical’ which could be added to most bikes to convert it into a long-tail. Shortly afterward, Surly thought the concept was a great idea and developed their ‘Big Dummy’, which was fully compatible with XtraCycle’s accessories.
Surly Big Dummy at Melbourne’s Queen Victoria Market
Originally introduced in 2006, the 10th year Big Dummy is quite an impressive ride. It now comes equipped with powerful disc brakes, and a very impressive gear range loaded up with a 3×10 with an 11-36 cassette on the rear. This is so you can haul your stuff – and it’ll take almost 100kg of cargo. We’re not surprised by that number, as when we’ve loaded it up it stays solid as a rock, with little to no flex. It also comes with an incredibly versatile set of panniers, with multiple strap and clip attachment options, allowing you to carry almost any sized cargo. If it won’t the deck and the frame have all manner of options to attach further accessories and racks. You really could customise this to carry the kitchen sink, and then some. As a child carrier, it would be superb.
Stu wanted to try his kids on the back (just for their enjoyment) but whilst he had it, he thought he’d do Mt Pleasant to see how it handled it (and, of course, how he handled it).
I’d tour on this! It rolls along really nicely and has loads of gears for loads of gear.
Drop on by for a test ride of this, or the other long-tail we stock the Kona Ute. We also have a long-tail eBike, the eZee Expedir, should you need a little assistance, or we could fit a kit to any of our cargo options.